La comète 17P/Holmes en 2017, après son explosion. © peresanz, Adobe Stock

Witness the remnants of a spectacular comet eruption this summer

In 2007, a The comet was exploding in our sky. Without decay. But suddenly a million times brighter! That one Astronomers Call 17P / Holmes is not his first. This led to its discovery in 1892, albeit less spectacular, of a similar eruption. Probably due to the rearrangement of the ice that is the center of the ice comet. Publishing restorations Gas And create a strong pressure so that it ends up exploding ice, gas and dust.

What is more remarkable than that Astronomers from the Finnish Geospatial Research Institute Today it is argued that the tug created by the eruption of comet Did not scatter in space in 2007. Conversely, this dust will have accumulated on one Around the circular path The ellipse passing through the original eruption point. This summer, to be precise, the samples predict the accumulation of particles at this point – it should be possible to see the path. Even with an amateur telescope. At least 30 cm, all identical, and equipped with a CCTV camera, which makes it possible to use the image capture method.

Dust to take

Because of the particles formed by the explosion Comet 17P / Holmes Smaller – with fractions of a millimeter in diameter – they are more reflective Light From The sun. Turning them into the form of a vague path will appear on its side from the end of July. Pegasus galaxy.

If successful in detecting dust generated by explosions such as 17P / Holmes, astronomers could one day imagine the task of collecting fragments of comets. And the work done on the eruption of 2007 encourages them to model the path of the eruption of 1892. To know when the next eruption of this strange comet will occur, it is currently impossible. Maybe during his next visit Near the sunIn January 2028?

In the pictures: Comet Holmes surpasses all predictions

For more than ten days he has been in the news with his biggest increase BrightnessHow brutal it is, it is indescribable and you know itEye Naked. Enthusiasts have a field day, and it has become the star of the Futura-Sciences forum where enthusiasts exchange photos and notes. One of them, Jean-Baptiste Feldman, tells us about the comet and presents the images collected in the forum.

Article by Jean-Baptiste Feldman, published on 08/11/2007

Since October 24, 2007, 17P / Holmes – a time comet that has been visiting us every 6.9 years – has mobilized the astronomical community: its brightness has increased to a million in a matter of hours, making this star visible to the naked eye as a new star. In the constellation Perseus [que l’on voit actuellement au nord-est deux heures après le coucher du Soleil, NDLR].

The first to sound the alarm was Juan Antonio Henriques-Santana, a Spanish amateur astronomer, shortly after Bob King in Arizona, and then the Japanese audience. Since then, Holmes has been the subject of international followers at the professional and amateur level.

If you look northeast in the evening, one can now notice the result of the fragmentation of its center with a plan of ice. Scientists are well aware of this decay phenomenon when a comet comes very close to the Sun, but here it is indescribable, Holmes Mars and Thursday. If the radiation from our star could break the comets so far away, it would not be possible to observe the frozen moons currently orbiting these planets!

So what does it offerEnergy Dust and ice explosions in Holmes: the result of a collision with another small celestial body or an imbalance of electrical charges between a comet and the sun, which causes the nucleus to explode. Capacitor Is it too heavy? Still a stranger: In 1896, four years after the comet was discovered by Edwin Holmes, it had already experienced such an event.

The star of the moment for amateurs

While waiting for the scientists’ explanations, the amateurs feast. At Futura-Sciences, just hours after the warning, pictures and surveillance reports arrived on the evening of the 24th. Everyone can see the comet as a little obscure place with the naked eye, even if the moon is in one place. Photography Of Scoby.

Of Maps A rear jet (small tail of dust) taken from behind a telescope shows a very bright nucleus in the center Coma Sharp and spherical. Good weather helps, photographers get active. Chamois Makes a good comparison over several days, which helps to measure the increase in coma size. By his side, The glowing man Use a filter Infrared Highlight jets ThingWhen Vincent Becker Focuses on close-up shots.

Such as DavidCHIts treatments Digital Express imbalances in the tail. The work of such a young audience should not be forgotten St. Brock17 years old, and his most accurate maps.

Find the latest images of the comet in the section Astronomical material and amateur photography.

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